One of the world’s greatest pound-for-pound fighters and former Unified Super-Bantamweight World Champion Guillermo Rigondeaux and popular British Champion Jazza Dickens took questions from the world’s media last night ahead of their highly anticipated showdown on Saturday 12th March, live and exclusive on BoxNation.
Cuban megastar Rigondeaux, renowned for his devastating hand speed and lightening quick reactions, made it clear that he is gunning for IBF Super-Bantamweight Champion Carl Frampton and WBA Champion Scott Quigg and plans on taking their belts once he has beaten Dickens.
He said: “I’m going over to England to win and then I’m going to beat Frampton and Quigg. I want to make a point that I’m here waiting for them, they know where to find me! I am a warrior and I will fight anywhere; even in my own backyard. I commend Jazza for stepping in the ring with me,”
“This is the best fight for me at the moment. This is the fight that my promoters got me. If the kid has the guts to get in the ring with me then I respect him for doing so. I want to take on the winner of Frampton vs. Quigg, they have both been avoiding the best in their division and there’s nowhere for them to hide now.”
The 35 year-old two-time Olympic gold medallist was stripped of his WBO World title last October after failing to make a defence of it in 2015. Rigondeaux is frustrated at his lack of opponents and believes he has the rest of his weight division running scared.
Undefeated Rigondeaux is regarded as one of the greatest amateur boxers in history and has fought in Japan, Mexico, America and Ireland. ‘El Chacal’ or ‘The Jackal’ is now looking forward to showcasing his skills on these shores for the first time and promises English fight fans won’t be disappointed.
He said: “I would love to fight for titles against champions in England. I know the fans love their boxing and I’m looking forward to showing them what a real champion looks like. I’ll go to England or anywhere where the action is at, if they sign the right cheque I’ll be there. If any 122 pounders have the guts to step in the ring with me they will get beaten up.”
Merseyside hero Jazza Dickens has already been written off by many people in the boxing world but the chirpy Scouser remains upbeat about causing one of the biggest upsets in boxing history.
He said: “The odds are massively against me but I’ve got a good feeling! I always believed an opportunity like this would come up one day and it’s all the better my people can come and watch it at the Echo Arena. This is a massive opportunity for me and I’m going to grab it with both hands,”
“When I look in another man’s eyes I can see he’s just the same as me. I’m a man and he’s a man; we both feel courage and we both feel fear. On the night we’ll be stepping in the ring as equals and I believe I have what it takes to beat him; I wouldn’t have taken the fight if I didn’t.”
He added: “I have to go in there with my plan and be focused at the job at hand. I hope he is the champion that he has always been because I want to beat the very best Guillermo Rigondeaux there is.”
Flanagan v Mathews headlines an action packed card that also features one of the worlds greatest boxers, Guillermo Rigondeaux, taking on Merseyside hero Jazza Dickens; another star of world boxing, dynamite punching South African Zolani Tete challenges for the Vacant IBF International Bantamweight Championship against Jose Santos Gonzalez; Birmingham ace Tommy Langford defends his WBO Intercontinental Middleweight title against Lewis Taylor; hard-hitting Ellesmere Port’s star Paul Butler will challenge for a championship belt; Blackpool’s Matty Askin defends his English Cruiserweight title against Swindon’s Lawrence Bennett, plus Indian superstar Vijender Singh makes his Liverpool debut. The undercard features some of the best talent in Merseyside: undefeated leading world title contender Kevin Satchell; red-hot prospect Steven Lewis; European Champion Ryan Farrag; Manchester prospects Macaulay McGowan and Zelfa Barrett and Leicester ace Lyon Woodstock complete the card.
Ticket for ‘A Tale Of Two Cities’ are priced at £40, £60, £80, £100, £150* and are available from:
0844 249 1000
Merseyside hero James ‘Jazza’ Dickens says he’s happy to be labelled as the underdog heading into his massive David versus Goliath showdown with pound-for-pound star Guillermo Rigondeaux but insists he won’t be there to make up the numbers.
Dickens takes on the Cuban superstar over ten rounds on the title-packed undercard of Terry Flanagan’s world title defence against Derry Mathews on Saturday 12th March, exclusively live on BoxNation.
‘Jazza’, who’ll be fighting Rigondeaux in front of his home crowd at the Liverpool Echo Arena, has already been written off by many people in the boxing world but the chirpy Scouser remains fully-focused on causing one of the biggest upsets in recent boxing history.
“People have already told me that I have no chance of beating him but when I look in another man’s eyes I can see he’s just the same as me. I’m a man and he’s a man; we both feel courage and we both feel fear. On the night we’ll be stepping in the ring as equals and I believe I have what it takes to beat him; I wouldn’t have taken the fight if I didn’t,” said Dickens.
Rigondeaux’s devastating hand speed, lightening quick reactions and thumping shot power are enough to beat any fighter, so it’s hardly surprising that he has been avoided by so many. Scott Quigg and Carl Frampton are the latest to avoid the dangerous 35 year-old but Dickens says there’s no way he’d pass at the chance of testing himself against the world’s best.
He said: “I’ve had a lot of people congratulating me on taking the fight but at the end of the day it’s my job to take fights. Personally I don’t think you should be praised for having courage in boxing because that’s the game we’re in. All I’ve done is taken a fight and that’s what boxers should do. A lot of boxers are ducking fights at the moment and it’s not good for the sport,”
“Fight fans want to be entertained and I’ll be giving it my best shot on the night. We all know how good Rigondeaux is, he’s a great champion and it will be an honour sharing the ring with him in my own city. This fight is all thanks to Frank Warren, I’m very lucky and blessed to have Frank’s backing for this once in a lifetime opportunity.”
Winning his first 16 fights and collecting the English Super-Bantamweight title along the way, Dickens suffered his first loss to Kid Galahad in a British and Commonwealth title challenge in September 2014. The 24 year-old bounced back and is currently on a five fight unbeaten run, capturing the British title against Josh Wale last March before successfully defending it against Martin Ward in November. The local Scouse hero says his life could have taken a different path if he didn’t have boxing to channel his energy in to.
He said: “I remember walking into the gym for the very first time and thinking ‘I want to be a world champion’. My Dad used to ask me to go down there with him but I was obsessed with football up until the age of twelve. As soon as I hung up my boots and stepped into the ring something came over me. There was a picture of the legendary John Conteh on the wall wearing his WBC belt and I said to my Dad ‘that’s going to be me’,”
“Boxing was an escape from life. I got a massive rush every time I laced up my gloves and I was receiving praise for hard work for the first time in my life so it really drove me on to succeed. The coaches from my youth played a massive role in getting me to where I am today and I’m very thankful to them for giving their time up for free. I wasn’t born in a bad area but there wasn’t much going on there for kids to get involved in once they reached their teens. I was just lucky and blessed that I had the talent to put a pair of gloves on instead of getting involved in petty crime.”
Guillermo Rigondeaux vs Jazza Dickens on March 12 at the Liverpool Echo Arena
One of the world’s top pound-for-pound boxing stars Guillermo Rigondeaux will fight in Britain for the first time on Saturday 12th March at the Liverpool Echo Arena when he faces Merseyside hero Jazza Dickens.
The Cuban superstar takes on Dickens over ten rounds on the undercard of Terry Flanagan’s WBO World Lightweight title defence against Derry Mathews and is a further fantastic addition to the top quality show, that saw world class fighter Zolani Tete added to the line up this week.
Undefeated Rigondeaux, who fights out of Miami, Florida, is regarded as the world’s best super-bantamweight and the dangerous 35-year-old is the man that Carl Frampton and Scott Quigg both chose to avoid and instead wisely opted to fight each other.
“El Chacal” or “The Jackal” is also considered one of the greatest amateur boxers in history, a two-time Olympic Champion and currently undefeated in 16 fights in with ten knockouts. He won his first world title, the WBA Interim crown, in November 2013 before becoming the full WBA World Champion in January 2012 when he knocked out then unbeaten Rico Ramos in six rounds.
He then unified the WBA title with the WBO belt when he outpointed Nonito Donaire in April 2013 with three further defences of both belts until his was stripped by both organisations last year. He last fought in November when he outpointed Drian Francisco over ten rounds to claim the WBC International Silver title.
Rigondeaux, who’s fought in America, Mexico, Ireland, China and Japan is looking forward to showcasing his skills on the these shores for the first time and promises to give fans a real eye-catching display.
“I’m happy to announce my upcoming fight on March 12th in Liverpool against James Dickens. I really look forward fighting this young up and comer in Dickens. I hear he’s very good, but I’m going to have to disappoint his hometown fans and teach him a lesson in boxing. I hope the British audience appreciates my skills when I’m done with James.”
He added, “I’d like to thank Frank Warren for putting on the show and I also would like to thank Roc Nation and Caribe Promotions for putting this deal together. I’m looking forward to making my British debut at a time where there is great boxing in Europe, especially in my division. I’m excited to come out and give my best and deliver a world-class performance to the fans. Frampton and Quigg are both cowards for finding ways to avoid the best in their division. We wait in anticipation to see if the winner of a great fight between them would step up and step in the ring with me, so the whole world can see who the best 122 pound fighter is. Fans should come see the real super world champion in Liverpool, as I¹ll be ready to put on a show and be in a position to happily knock out the winner, if either would even fathom the idea of stepping in the same ring with me.”
David Itskowitch , COO of RocNation Boxing, Rigondeaux’s co promoter said, “All of us at Roc Nation Sports are extremely excited about Guillermo having the opportunity to fight Jazza Dickens in the United Kingdom as there is intense interest in the super bantamweight division there right now. Despite fighting in hostile territory, we have every confidence that he will emerge victorious and remain one of boxing¹s best pound for pound fighters.”
In a real ‘Rocky’ story Dickens heads into the fight as the underdog against Rigondeaux, but has a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to rip up the script and catapult himself into the world’s elite by defeating the Havana hitman.
Winning his first 16 fights and collecting the English Super-Bantamweight title along the way, he suffered his first loss to Kid Galahad in a British and Commonwealth title challenge in September 2014. He bounced back and is currently on a five fight unbeaten run and captured the British title against Josh Wale last March and defended it against Martin Ward in November.
The chirpy Scouser is a local hero with his down to earth, jack-the-lad, character, but has a steely determination to upset the odds on the biggest night of his life.
“It is like a Rocky story, one day I’m just training waiting for my next fight and then I get call, do I want to fight Guillermo Rigondeaux? Are you mad, one of the best pound-for-pound fighters in the world wants to fight me? Not half, I’ll definitely have some of that!” Said Dickens.
“Opportunities like this don’t come around every day so I’ve grabbed it with both hands. It’s been my childhood dream to be the best in the world and this to me is a golden opportunity to become the best by beating Rigondeaux,”
“He might not have the belts, but he’s still the world champion in my eyes, Frampton and Quigg both didn’t want to know him, but what they see as a threat, I see as an opportunity. We’ve all got weaknesses and Rigondeaux will have his, it’s my job to go out an exploit them and beat him.”
Ticket for ‘A Tale Of Two Cities’ are priced at £40, £60, £80, £100, £150* and are available from:
0844 249 1000